Maharashtra has cut a story figure with Gujarat piping it to post by bagging the mammoth Rs 1.54 lakh crore plus the Vedanta-Foxconn project.
It is pertinent to note that the MoU for the single biggest investment of its kind in Maharashtra was signed in the presence of New Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and his deputy Fadnavis in mid-July. It was said at that time that Maharashtra won the bid for the mega deal over Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana, and Himachal Pradesh
Chairman of Vedanta Resources Limited Anil Agarwal however, informed the world about the mega project in a series of tweets.
The news gave a much required political fodder to the Maha Vikas Aghadi, a political combination of Shiv Sena, NCP, and Congress which ruled the state until the political maneuvering of the BJP saw majority of the MLAs forming a breakaway faction under the leadership of Eknath Shinde.
The development is seen as a major embarrassment for Eknath Shinde, who is being seen under the tutelage of his deputy, the former Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis of the BJP.
The opposition was quick to point out that it was the ineptitude and lack of stature of Eknath Shinde which resulted in the project being dragged away from Maharashtra to Gujarat.
The bombshell indeed has the reasons to render Eknath Shinde and the new government speechless. It had only been six weeks since Maharashtra had claimed to have beaten 5 states to win the Vedanta Group-Foxconn`s project with investment worth USD 20 billion.
With Eknath Shinde seen spotted hopping one Ganesh pandal to another during the Ganesh festival and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in Russia at the moment, the opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) was quick to point out the loss of over 200,000 direct and indirect jobs for the state. The Vedanta Group-Foxconn partnership in the sunrise semiconductors chips and display fabrications sector was planned to be set up in Pune in the beginning.
Livid at the state`s loss by their former colleagues who backstabbed the Thackrey clan to align with the BJP and claim Chief Ministership of Maharashtra, Aaditya Thackeray came on heavily on the Shinde Government. Reminding the world that the previous government had been trying to bring to Pune, the son of former Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and a minister in the previous government, Aditya Thackrey said the Shinde-Fadnavis government should pay attention to investment instead of manhandling workers and brandishing weapons. He was referring to a recent episode of firing from a pistol by Shinde-affiliated MLA Sada Sarvankar during a clash between two rival factions at Dadar.
The Yuva Sena Chief said “It is clear that because the Vedanta group doesn’t trust the current dispensation in the state, they have moved to Gujarat.” The third-generation politician from the Thackerey clan said
Vedanta chief Anil Agarwal was willing to invest in Maharashtra and that “almost everything but documentation” was over with the previous government that he was part of. he said the project now going to Gujarat is a loss to at least 170 ancillary industries in Maharashtra.
The NCP state president in Maharashtra Jayant Patil slammed the Shinde-Fadnavis government for the loss to Maharashtra. “With Gujarat elections coming up, the Maharashtra BJP seems to be safeguarding the interests of the neighbouring state.” ” Will the CM and DCM apologise to the educated, unemployed youth of this state for losing these huge and rightful employment slots,” He asked.
Journalist Sudhir Suryawanshi pointed out on twitter that in recent times several important projects are shifted out of Maharashtra, either to Gujarat of Delhi. Some had also expressed paranoia that Mumbai will lose its importance as financial capital to the benefit of emerging financial capital GIFT city in Gujarat in the longer run.
1. IFSC centre planned at BKC, but relocated in Gujarat
2. Centre Board for Workers Education, from Nagpur to Delhi
3. MIAL office shifted from Mumbai to Gujarat.
4. National Security Guard & National Marine policy Academy, planned at Palghar but shifted to Dwarka, Gujarat.
5. Air India office was in Mumbai that later shifted in Delhi
6. Trade mark patent office was in Mumbai & later it was shifted in Delhi.
7. The ship-breaking activity moved from Mumbai to Gujarat.
8. Diamond market shifted from Mumbai to Surat.
While Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the MoU is an important step in accelerating India’s semiconductor manufacturing ambitions, MNS Chief and staunch regionalist Raj Thackeray has demanded a probe into why and how the project slipped out of Maharashtra.